Nancy Leigh DeMoss: Mary, this is one of the passages in God's Word that I really, really love, but it also makes me say "ouch" so often, because as we're looking at these different elements of biblical womanhood and how our lives are supposed to be different from those of the world, and how we as women make the gospel believable. I look at some of these and say, "I am so far from being this kind of a woman. What am I doing teaching this material?"

I don't know if you ever feel that as you . . .

Mary: Well, especially with today's topic! It is, "Oh my goodness. How can we even teach on that? How can I teach on that?" I don't feel as though I've arrived; I feel very much in process when it comes to this topic.

Nancy: So, I think that some people who listen to us or watch us or read our books, or whatever, think, Oh, they must just not struggle with these areas, because here they are teaching these things. They must just 'get it.' They must not have the same temptations."

Mary: I wish!

Nancy: I find as I'm having to teach these things, as we discuss these things, that God is doing a searching work in my own heart, in making these more real. We've looked at several elements of the true woman already. The first was discernment—she has right thinking. Then we looked at reverence—she honors God and lives as if she is always in His presence, which we are. Then the last time we looked at affection.

Mary: Affection for the family, whether you are single or married, whatever your age or stage of life—to have that affection for family and what it represents.

Nancy: Loving what God loves. God has a family, and He wants us to love family. When we do, we picture His family. Today we come to . . . Well, let me read the text, Titus 2, and that will give us some context:

Teach what accords with sound doctrine . . . Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior [we talked about that], not slanderers or slaves to much wine (vv. 1, 3).

We said that has to do not just with substance abuse, but with the bigger issue of overindulgence, which is a lack of reverence to God. And then these older women are to,

Teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, [and then this next one] to be self-controlled (vv. 4–5).


It affects so many areas, so many aspects of our lives, so let's dig into that. It's a word in the Greek: sophron. It's hard to translate it with one English word. Help us with the meaning of that word.

Mary: The meaning of that word, again, it is hard to capture in one word, but it contains the idea of restraint, the idea of putting on the brakes, the idea of soundness, of good thinking that leads to good living.

Nancy: Having a sound mind, having a sane mind. You say, "I'm sane!" Well, sometimes we act like we're not, because our thinking isn't right. If our thinking gets off-kilter, our living is going to get off-kilter. So the apostle is saying to this pastor, "Tell these older women that they're supposed to be models of godly living, and then they're supposed to train these younger women to be self-controlled, to have sound thinking."

Now, if we've been discerning and have been basing our lives on the Word of God and on reverence for God, it's going to be easier, because that's the foundation.

Mary: Exactly, you need to have right thinking in order to have right living, and that is the …